What Is the Purpose of Veneers?


A row of tooth veneers.

When you smile, talk, or laugh, your teeth are the very first thing others notice. If your teeth are stained, chipped, or damaged by plaque, it doesn't create a good first impression. But the good news is that this problem can be fixed.


At Clay & Associates, we offer restorative treatments that bring your teeth back to their original state. Known as veneers, these treatments involve a light, porcelain shell that is custom-made for treating minor issues such as stains and chips. Veneers are good for treating a lot of oral problems as they relate to the overall health and appearance of your teeth while improving your self-confidence.


Veneers are an excellent alternative to getting caps or crowns for your teeth. At Clay & Associates, we can provide veneer treatments to conceal stains, fix tiny chips, and fill in gaps between your teeth. There is no complex fitting process, which means less time spent at the dental office. However, your gums and bone structure must be healthy enough to undergo this simple procedure. Continue reading to see if dental veneers might be right for you.


When Do You Need Veneers?


A woman sitting in a dentist's chair looking at veneers.

If your teeth are discolored, chipped, or simply worn down, it might be time to consider getting veneers. This quick and simple procedure can be used to treat such problems and can therefore help you avoid the need for getting crowns or implants.


Issues can crop up from time to time. You can have gaps that rest between teeth that need filling right away. This condition, known as diastema, is a problem that's more common than you think. Many people have reported a drop in confidence in their smile due to this prevailing issue. Diastema could have roots in gum disease, poorly fitted teeth, or a previous dental procedure. However, the good news is that it can be easily treated with veneers.


Another reason to get veneers is when you have peg lateral incisors. These small, under-developed teeth are commonly located on both sides of your upper front teeth. They are tiny and typically have sharp, pointy tips.


While some choose to embrace their unique incisors, they leave others feeling self-conscious. Peg laterals can also leave large, undesirable gaps between your teeth.


Soft enamel is another reason to seek veneers for your teeth. An imbalance occurs where not enough calcium phosphate is produced to ensure strong teeth, which results in discoloration. The affected area is usually characterized by the presence of brown, yellow, or off-white spots. The culprit?—usually genetics. However, other factors such as high acid content in your foods can contribute to the issue by stripping away the calcium needed to keep your enamel strong.


But no matter the cause, a good veneer treatment can help.

Is There More Than One Type of Dental Veneer?

You might think that there is only one type of dental veneer, but in fact, there are several options available to you, such as:

  • Porcelain veneers: These veneer treatments are made of porcelain and will allow light to reflect off your teeth for a glossy look that's bright and natural.

  • Resin composite veneers: These are best when used to fill in gaps between teeth. They can be effective when touching up discolored teeth or reshaping them to perfection.

Porcelain veneers are the most preferred treatment of choice due to their innate ability to guard against staining. At Clay & Associates, we offer this version to optimize your smile and protect your teeth for years to come. Porcelain veneers can keep a vibrant and beautiful smile going for 10-15 years with proper aftercare.

When You Should Not Get Veneers

Veneers are not recommended in cases where tooth decay is present. A filling is what is best called for to treat this common problem.


Moderate to advanced gingivitis impacts the effectiveness of veneer treatments. Bleeding gums or gums that are swollen will interfere with the fitting process. Your veneers won't bond well to the affected tooth, and you may start to see the borders where the treatment was applied. Consequently, your veneers will loosen and fail to provide the protection your teeth need to guard against staining.


If you grind your teeth constantly, you should not seek veneer treatment. The reason for this is that you could ruin the porcelain by chipping or shattering it. Instead, your dentist may recommend whitening strips or a mouth guard as alternatives for straightening and whitening your teeth. Plus, a mouth guard is a great option for protecting your teeth from damage to this condition.

How Porcelain Veneers Are Applied and What to Expect

The procedure works like this: A dentist will grind down the affected tooth before the procedure. In some cases, a local anesthetic may be administered to stave off pain. From there, they will make a mold of your mouth to ensure your veneer fits perfectly. Once done, the dentist will place the veneer directly over the desired tooth. All that is left is to enjoy your new smile.


Dental Services You Can Trust in Fort Dodge, IA

At Clay & Associates, we have a variety of dental services from cosmetic procedures to routine cleanings and more. We offer polishing and restorative dental care as part of normal cleaning. Our team can do screenings for oral cancer, provide care for an abscessed tooth, and clean around gums to prevent further infection. You can learn more by contacting us today.


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